By Jamie Arrowsmith 26/04 Updated: 30/04 15:42
FAIRFIELD Villa had to settle for a Midland Combination Division One point from their trip to Stretton Eagles on Saturday when a second half goal restricted them to a 2-2 draw.
The two sides cancelled each other out in an even start to the contest with Villa debutant Craig Wood looking assured between the sticks.
Both sides were trying to pass the ball on a slick surface but chances were proving few and far between.
That was until Eagles got themselves ahead when an attempted Wood clearance was blocked by the striker and it fell kindly for his team-mate to convert.
Rather then let their heads drop, Villa, who saw last night’s (Thursday) trip to Feckenham postponed due to a waterlogged pitch, responded well with Steve McGlen and Martin Slevin beginning to see more of the ball and causing the home side a few problems.
The visitors were soon level when Christopher Glover and Adam Pillinger combined for Craig Cosgrove to lift the ball over the keeper.
A clever finish from Pillinger then saw the game turned on its head after good work in the build up by McGlen and Slevin.
Stung by falling behind, Stretton spent the remainder of the first half on the front foot but Villa defended well to keep them at bay and protect their advantage until the interval.
The second period followed a similar pattern to the first with both sides trying to play decent football.
Villa threatened occasionally but it was the hosts who scored the crucial fourth goal when after Slevin surprisingly got caught in possession, the striker waltzed round Wood and tapped into the empty net.
The return from injury of Ryan Sproston was a positive during the second half for the visitors but they were unable to force a winner and in the end it took a superb flying save from Wood to ensure they left with a point.
Paul Oakes’ men face two more away games this week with tomorrow’s visit to Knowle (3pm) being followed by a trip to Hampton on Wednesday night (7pm).
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